Artemisia Gentileschi Gallery
Gentileschi was born on July 8, 1593 in Rome. She was the daughter of the painter Orazio Gentileschi and was trained by him. Our perception of Gentileschi has been colored by the legend surrounding her. Her alleged rape by her father colleague, the quadratura painter Agostino Tassi, when she was 17, was the subject of a protracted legal action brought by Orazio in 1611. Although she was subsequently married off to Pietro Antonio di Vicenzo Stiattesi in 1612 and gave birth to at least one daughter, she soon separated from her husband and led a strikingly independent life for a woman of her time - even if there is no firm evidence for the reputation she enjoyed in the 18th century as a sexual libertine. After her marriage, Gentileschi lived in Florence until about 1620. She then worked in Genoa and settled in Naples in 1630. Gentileschi traveled to England in 1638-40, where she collaborated with her father on a series of canvasses for the Queen House, Greenwich (now Marlborough House, London). Gentileschi died in Naples in 1652.
It is tempting to adduce the established biographical data in partial explanation of the context of her art: the sympathy and vigor with which she evokes her heroines and their predicaments, and her obsession with that tale of female triumph, Judith and Holofernes. But such possibilities should not distract attention from the high professional standards that Gentileschi brought to her art. In a letter, dated July 3, 1612, to the Grand Duchess of Tuscany, Orazio claimed that "Artemisia, having turned herself to the profession of painting, has in three years so reached the point that I can venture to say that today she has no peer. Despite the obvious exaggeration, one can agree that Gentileschi art was of a consistently high quality virtually from the beginning.
Related Paintings of Artemisia Gentileschi :. | Maria Maddalena | Artemisia | Self-Portrait as the Allegory of Painting (mk25) | Judith and Holofernes 333 | Judith Maidservant DIA |
For his home town of Castelfranco, Giorgione painted the Castelfranco Madonna, an altarpiece in sacra conversazione form ?? Madonna enthroned, with saints on either side forming an equilateral triangle. This gave the landscape background an importance which marks an innovation in Venetian art, and was quickly followed by his master Giovanni Bellini and others.Giorgione began to use the very refined chiaroscuro called sfumato ?? the delicate use of shades of color to depict light and perspective ?? around the same time as Leonardo. Whether Vasari is correct in saying he learnt it from Leonardo's works is unclear ?? he is always keen to ascribe all advances to Florentine sources. Leonardo's delicate color modulations result from the tiny disconnected spots of paint that he probably derived from manuscript illumination techniques and first brought into oil painting. These gave Giorgione's works the magical glow of light for which they are celebrated.
Most entirely central and typical of all Giorgione's extant works is the Sleeping Venus now in Dresden, first recognized by Morelli, and now universally accepted, as being the same as the picture seen by Michiel and later by Ridolfi (his 17th century biographer) in the Casa Marcello at Venice. An exquisitely pure and severe rhythm of line and contour chastens the sensuous richness of the presentment: the sweep of white drapery on which the goddess lies, and of glowing landscape that fills the space behind her, most harmoniously frame her divinity. The use of an external landscape to frame a nude is innovative; but in addition, to add to her mystery, she is shrouded in sleep, spirited away from accessibility to her conscious expression.
It is recorded by Michiel that Giorgione left this piece unfinished and that the landscape, with a Cupid which subsequent restoration has removed, were completed after his death by Titian. The picture is the prototype of Titian's own Venus of Urbino and of many more by other painters of the school; but none of them attained the fame of the first exemplar. The same concept of idealized beauty is evoked in a virginally pensive Judith from the Hermitage Museum, a large painting which exhibits Giorgione's special qualities of color richness and landscape romance, while demonstrating that life and death are each other's companions rather than foes.
Apart from the altarpiece and the frescoes, all Giorgione's surviving works are small paintings designed for the wealthy Venetian collector to keep in his home; most are under two foot (60 cm) in either dimension. This market had been emerging over the last half of the fifteenth century in Italy, and was much better established in the Netherlands, but Giorgione was the first major Italian painter to concentrate his work on it to such an extent ?? indeed soon after his death the size of such paintings began to increase with the prosperity and palaces of the patrons.Jacob van Ruisdael
Dutch Baroque Era Painter, ca.1628-1682
Ruysdael's favorite subjects are simple woodland scenes, similar to those of Everdingen and Hobbema. He is especially noted as a painter of trees, and his rendering of foliage, particularly of oak leaf age, is characterized by the greatest spirit and precision. His views of distant cities, such as that of Haarlem in the possession of the marquess of Bute, and that of Katwijk in the Glasgow Corporation Galleries, clearly indicate the influence of Rembrandt.
He frequently painted coast-scenes and sea-pieces, but it is in his rendering of lonely forest glades that we find him at his best. The subjects of certain of his mountain scenes seem to be taken from Norway, and have led to the supposition that he had traveled in that country. We have, however, no record of such a journey, and the works in question are probably merely adaptations from the landscapes of Van Everdingen, whose manner he copied at one period. Only a single architectural subject from his brush is known--an admirable interior of the New Church, Amsterdam. The prevailing hue of his landscapes is a full rich green, which, however, has darkened with time, while a clear grey tone is characteristic of his seapieces. The art of Ruysdael, while it shows little of the scientific knowledge of later landscapists, is sensitive and poetic in sentiment, and direct and skillful in technique. Figures are sparingly introduced into his compositions, and such as occur are believed to be from the pencils of Adriaen van de Velde, Philip Wouwerman, and Jan Lingelbach.
Unlike the other great Dutch landscape painters, Ruysdael did not aim at a pictorial record of particular scenes, but he carefully thought out and arranged his compositions, introducing into them an infinite variety of subtle contrasts in the formation of the clouds, the plants and tree forms, and the play of light. He particularly excelled in the painting of cloudscapes which are spanned dome-like over the landscape, and determine the light and shade of the objects.
Goethe lauded him as a poet among painters, and his work shows some of the sensibilities the Romantics would later celebrate.Ralph Blakelock
American Painter, 1847-1919
One of the most important visionary artists in late 19th-century America, he was self-taught as a painter. From 1867 he was exhibiting landscapes in the style of the Hudson River school at the National Academy of Design in New York. Rather than going abroad for advanced training, like most of his contemporaries, he spent the years 1869-72 in the western United States. Back in New York, Blakelock evolved his personal style during the 1870s and 1880s. Eschewing literal transcriptions of nature, he preferred to paint evocative moonlit landscapes such as Moonlight (Washington, DC, Corcoran Gal. A.).